Japan’s Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has unveiled plans to extract hydrogen from the moon’s ice to be used as a fuel source, the Tokyo main newspaper reported. Japan Times reports.
The goal is to reduce costs during the country’s planned lunar exploration in the mid-2030s by creating a local source of fuel instead of withdrawing large amounts of fuel from Earth.
Scientists suspect that near the south pole of the moon there may be significant ice deposits and hide in the shadows of its numerous craters.
As a preliminary step, the space agency plans to work with NASA to build the Moon Gate, a smaller space station orbiting the moon designed to serve as a step toward the lunar surface below.
The generated fuel would provide enough power to carefully transport four astronauts to and from the sluice. It can also be used to drive a vehicle on the surface, which can travel up to 1
JAXA estimates that about 37 tons of water will be needed to provide enough power to and from the Lunar Gateway. Another 21 tons will be needed to survey the surface.
JAXA also unveiled six-wheel-drive projects, a self-driving vehicle last year, in collaboration with automotive giant Toyota, powered by hydrogen fuel cells.
READ MORE: A little hop for man? Japan shoots for vessels powered by moon water[[[[The Japan Times]
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